Fair warning, this post will have some rather off-color language.  We'll start with a short open letter:

Dear automobile drivers,
Please put the cell phone down, pay attention to the road and get the fuck off of my ass.
Signed,
Motorcyclists everywhere.

Maybe it's just me, but it sure seems like car drivers so far this season are much more aggressive than I recall, and 95% of my frustration comes down to tailgating.  I don't get it.  Tailgating gets you nowhere faster.  It never makes the person in front speed up, it only frustrates the person behind and creates a stressful and unsafe situation for everyone involved, so just back the fuck up, or make a pass.  Seriously.

I have three stories so far from this season, all within the last month or so, of where more corrective action than necessary was needed to keep someone from following me too closely.

The first was a twit following me on the ramp between Alt 7 West and I-87 North during rush hour.  For those that don't know, this is a typically a stop and go situation and a jogging-speed bumper to bumper traffic flow on a good day.  This day happened to be a good day, and yet this moron felt it necessary to follow me by, I'd estimate, 6 feet or so.  Too close, even at that speed.  Tap the brake, no response from the driver.  Tap again and actually slow down enough to require them to brake earned me some cushion at first, but she was right back on me shortly after.  It took me having to actually turn my head around behind me, look at her and motion for her to back the fuck off before the ill-fuctioning brain in her head figured out she was having little regard for someone else's life.

The next story is a happier one.  Man and (I assume) wife were behind me on Rt. 4 between Machanicville and Waterford, he was driving a new BMW X5.  That's probably irrelevant but for some reason the type of car he was driving gave me cause to expect differently from him.  Again, he was following me way too closely considering I was still doing 5-10mph over the speed limit.  The only good thing was I had no one in front of me and could take my time slowing to a stop if needed.  I tapped my brake to flash the light at him and he didn't budge.  I then just let off the throttle entirely, slowing at a pace that could not have been mistaken as accidental to about 25mph, and then accelerated back up.  To my surprise, he decided it a good idea to maintain a following distance of something marginally better than minimally acceptable.  I was overjoyed!

The most recent, happening just yesterday, being Monday evening of Memorial Day weekend and heading south on I-87 just past the Twin Bridges, and I had a white Pontiac G6 no better than 5 or 6 feet behind me in 60mph heavily congested traffic.  To make it worse?  Katie was on the bike with me.  Not cool.  Flash the brake light... nothing.  Flash it again... nothing still.  I wanted nothing more than to just get hard on brakes and laugh my ass off as the incredibly dim driver proceeded to shit her pants - BUT - that was just too risky given how close she was and the speeds we were traveling.  In a best-case scenario, she would have slammed into the back of us just as her ill-functioning brain was able to process "Oh SHIT!", and there being any justice in the world, my giant club of a muffler would come crashing through the windshield and sufficiently smash her skull to the point of halting what minimal cognitive activity there may have been going in there, saving countless more lives this shit head will most certainly endanger on the road.  But instead, I turned around, looked right at her and just pointed for a second.  I'm not sure what it was about that, but she backed WAY off.  All I can figure is that I some how was then perceived as a threat to her, and she decided to stay away for her own safety - seriously, she was THAT far away after that.

So that must be the secret - just ride erratically, make threatening gestures and most folks will elect to keep some distance.  I'll give it a shot (seriously, I will), and if that experiment fails, I'll turn to the age old technique of carrying some ball bearings in my pocket and start awarding people the privilege of buying a new windshield.

Nah... I'll just keep doing what I've been doing, and if someone still doesn't get it you can always pull over and let them pass and cross your fingers that natural selection will take care of them down the road somewhere.
BAF
5/29/2012 10:09:24 am

One option that seems to work most of the time for me, falling under your suggestion of riding erratically, is to start weaving back and forth in the lane.

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Dave
5/30/2012 08:25:22 am

Well living in the dirty JerZ you get that every 5 or 6 seconds and it is usually a high dollar auto with a mom on a cell phone who doesn't even care if she blotto blasts your soul to wherever it goes as long as she gets where she is going. There is little one can do I wish I could tell you how FUCKING MAD they make me. I had a witch the other day pissed at me because we were behind a cement truck that was dropping shrapnel so I backed off a bit and the C$$T screams at me hands flying and literally passes me in my lane . You guys know me if I could have I would have dragged her out of that car and beat the shyt right out of her, women or not I got kids to go home to ah well it's useless to complain!!! I here ya and wish there was something that could be done but Jersey's finest are to busy giving $500 speeding tickets to worry about our safety!!!!!!! And I am sure NY aint much better!!!

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